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10/27 Japanese American Citizens' League: Human Rights Forum

Created 26th October 2015 @ 20:51
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Dear JACL NY Chapter Members and Friends- We would like to cordially invite you to
join us on this special evening.


Tuesday, October 27th, 2015, 6:30 pm

12 West 18th St. #3E, Manhattan
Phone: 917-833-8123

The JACL (Japanese American Citizens League) NY Chapter and JAJA (Japanese
Americans and Japanese in America) would like to invite you to join us for an insightful
evening of interactive discussion with a special panel of JACL and JAJA members.

As a nation we have made many strides towards equality and marriage equality is now a
reality. JACL National has resolved to firmly support LGBT rights. However, the
LGBT community still lags in terms of total acceptance within the Asian community
and many misunderstandings still seem to exist. On this special evening we would
like to create a forum for serious and friendly discussion on our state of LGBT
awareness and support.

Our panelists for this event will be Hoshina Seki, Aya Yabe and Phillip Ozaki.

Hoshina Seki is the president of the American Buddhist Study Center at the NY Buddhist
Church in New York City, a research and educational center for Buddhism. Hoshina is also
on the Board of Trustees for the Institute of Buddhist Studies in Berkeley, a graduate-level
degree program in general Buddhist studies. Jodoshinshu is an open-minded Japanese
School of Buddhism founded by Shinran in 1224, which now openly embraces members of
the LGBT community. Earlier this year Hoshina put together a well attended LGBT
Symposium at the NY Buddhist Church as well as helping to organize a NYBC contingent
to march in the NYC Gay Pride Parade. JAJA and JACL members proudly marched in
support as part of the contingency.

Phillip Ozaki is a fourth generation Japanese-American and half Filipino-American. He
currently works as a fundraiser at Lambda Legal, the nation’s oldest and largest LGBT
legal rights organization, and formerly worked at the Japanese American Citizens League.
He is currently a board member of the JACL New York Chapter, and is a former board
co-chair of the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance. Phillip is originally from
Chicago and currently lives in Brooklyn.

Aya Yabe came to NYC from Japan in 1985 and has raised two children one of whom
is a recently married lesbian daughter. She is a prominent and active member of PFLAG
API: an Asian activist organization which is a partnership of parents, allies, and LGBT
people. Aya is a freelance translator whose work encompasses the business, technology
and education fields. She has also had 20 years of experience in teaching both secondary
and post-secondary education and provides consultation for Japanese students on their
college applications. Aya volunteers as a translator for non-profit groups in Japan and will
also talk about the LGBTQ movement in Japan.

The moderator will be George Hirose, Co-President of the JACL NY Chapter and
a member of JAJA’s Organizing Committee. George is also a professor in Photography at
Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, an exhibiting Fine Art Photographer, and runs a photography
business whose clients include Japan Society, the Noguchi Museum, the American
Museum of Folk Art as well as several other non-profit organizations in NYC.

The JACL and JAJA firmly support civil rights equality for all people regardless of race,
gender, or nationality. We feel that America’s incarceration of 120,000 people of Japanese
descent during WWII was a terrible mistake not to be forgotten or repeated. This event
is the second collaboration between our two organizations, the first being ”Hibakusha
Speak Out” in April 2015.

Please RSVP for this event to This event is a JAJA style
”potluck” event. Please bring a potluck dish or leave a donation in our donation jar.

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